Outwardly, Trisha Nagpal was a healthy, talented and giving girl with her whole life ahead of her.
A scholarship student in the biopharmaceutical science research program at the University of Ottawa, Trisha was also a volunteer for the Canadian Cancer Society, the United Way and studied classical Indian dance.
In March 2005, she began to suffer a bloated stomach. Her ankles began to swell.
Diagnosed with liver disease and because of her age and the urgency of her situation, she was brought to the top of the liver transplant list — normally a two- or three-year wait — and underwent the operation, but suffered a fatal cardiac arrest.
Less than two weeks after her symptoms first appeared, she had died. She was 18.
In her memory, her family organized the fourth annual Stroll for Liver at Vincent Massey Park yesterday to raise funds for liver disease research.
The Canadian Liver Foundation event is one of many held all over Canada this month, including Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton.
It was Simrin Nagpal’s idea to organize the walk in her older sister’s memory.
“I don’t want someone else to go through the same thing as what happened to my sister,” said Simrin, 20.
Remembering his middle daughter, Daljit Nagpal said Trisha “was a very good girl. She accomplished a lot in her short life. Now, we remember her every year.”
According to Daljit, there isn’t enough knowledge about liver disease out there.
“The liver is a silent killer. It doesn’t tell you anything until it goes into failure, and by then, it’s too late.
“We’re doing this walk for research and education and to raise awareness of the disease.”
“More people are needed to go into liver disease research,” said Simrin. “There are so many causes for liver disease and it can affect anybody.”
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